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New Mexico Nursing Home Abuse & Neglect Attorneys

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It is heartbreaking to think that nursing home workers and administrators could abuse or neglect an older adult. Unfortunately, abuse is commonplace in many nursing facilities across the United States.

The New Mexico nursing home abuse and neglect attorneys at Nursing Home Law Center at (800) 926-7565 are here to help. Contact us today through an initial free consultation to discuss a compensation case to recover your damages.

Most Caregiving Companies are Profit-Making Businesses

Some nursing home operators run a profit-making business rather than providing genuine care and medical attention to the elderly. Any senior not receiving proper care could quickly develop facility-acquired pressure sores or die from a lack of proper care.

According to the information gathered by Medicare and Medicaid, federal investigators found that twenty-seven (thirty-six percent) of the seventy-four nursing facilities in New Mexico had serious violations and deficiencies. These statewide nursing homes are now ranked below the national average because their residents receive substandard care.

Nursing Home Abuse Injury FAQsWhy Do Nurses Abuse the Elderly?

Research is shown that over two million American senior citizens are victimized through abuse and neglect every year. One estimate revealed that only twenty percent of cases are ever reported to proper authorities and adults protective service agencies.

Research released by the National Study of Elder Abuse revealed a significant increase in the number of cases over the last decade. A survey conducted by the National Adult Protective Services Association shows that less funding for advocacy agencies have resulted in less time for their investigators to handle cases of elderly abuse, making the problem worse.

Yet, the federal government has failed to enact laws to prevent elder abuse or create a uniform reporting system to manage the existing problem.

What Happens If Someone Dies in a Nursing Home?

When a patient dies in a nursing facility, staff members contact the family to notify them of the death. Typically, the administration will ask the family to contact a local mortuary to remove the decedent's remains. The funeral home will complete the resident's death certificate.

In some states, the body must be removed from a convalescent care center or assisted living home immediately. Before the mortuary picks up the resident's remains, a certified nursing assistant will prepare the body and gather up the decedent's possessions before performing a deep cleaning in the room.

How Can You Sue a Nursing Home for Wrongful Death?

If you believe that your loved one's death was caused by negligence, abuse, or intentional act, you have the legal right to file a civil lawsuit seeking compensation for damages. Under state law, the facility, nursing staff, and the doctor could be held legally liable for preventable death if the family can prove that:

  • An injury caused the death of someone they love
  • The facility, company, group of individuals or one individual caused the injury that led to the patient's death
  • The negligent parties committed a negligent, abusive, careless, or reckless act

Surviving spouses, parents, children, and siblings might expect to receive financial compensation to pay for mental anguish, loss of companionship, loss of financial support, medical expenses, hospitalization costs, the decedent's pain-and-suffering, and burial/funeral expenses.

What Is the First Step in Preventing Elder Abuse?

According to the National Institutes of Health, staff, families, and friends could take specific steps to prevent elderly abuse by:

  • Ensuring that established patient care procedures, policies, and protocols are followed
  • Family, friends, social workers, and volunteers regularly visiting the senior citizen
  • Ensuring that quality monitoring and surveillance systems are installed in the facility to capture any neglect, mistreatment, or abuse
  • Ensuring that all employees are regularly trained on elderly abuse and neglect issues and reporting protocols

Should you witness or become aware that anyone is the victim of elderly abuse, contact Adult Protective Services (APS) immediately. An APS officer will work concomitantly with social services to stop the abuse and investigate what occurred.

Where Does Elder Abuse Happen the Most?

Data released by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) revealed that senior citizens are most often abused, neglected, or mistreated where they live. Vulnerable adults residing in institutional settings like long-term care facilities, nursing centers, and assisted-living homes are most likely to be harmed by the staff, families, friends, and other patients.

Statistics maintained by the National Council on Aging revealed that about ten percent of all seniors will be abused or mistreated at some point during their later years.

How Much Is a Nursing Home Wrongful Death Settlement?

Resolving a civil lawsuit could be challenging. The lengthy process might take up to twenty-four months or longer to end with a negotiated settlement or jury trial award.

Some research shows that the average nursing center abuse lawsuit in America is resolved for about $400,000 or more. However, determining your case's value is difficult without a comprehensive review of the evidence because the circumstances and facts of all cases are unique.

An Abuse and Negligence Attorney Can Help

Was someone you love injured, abused, neglected, mistreated, or did they die unexpectedly by residing in a nursing home? If so, contact the New Mexico personal injury attorneys at Nursing Home Law Center to discuss your compensation claim during a free case review.

Dispensing Unnecessary Medications Harm Patients

Families must be aware of the statistics that show the widespread nature of deficiencies in nursing homes throughout the state. According to a study by the University of California-San Francisco, over forty-six percent of nursing homes were caught dispensing unnecessary drugs to patients in one year.

Also disheartening is that seventeen percent of nursing homes had patients who developed pressure sores in that year. Until caregiver administrators decide to improve their facilities' standards, patient abuse lawyers will hold all responsible parties legally accountable for their deficient care.

Victims subjected to these horrific conditions can speak with a nursing home lawyer to learn about their right to sue.

Nursing Home Abuse Laws

The NM Adult Protective Services Act is the primary protection for elder care residents. This law maintains a system of protective services for vulnerable adults who cannot protect themselves due to abuse, neglect, and exploitation.

"Elder abuse" has been defined under the law as any instance where a person knowingly, intentionally, or negligently and without justifiable cause inflicts physical pain, injury, or mental anguish on an individual.

In some cases, abuse is defined as the intentional deprivation of necessary services that maintain the vulnerable adult's mental and physical care. Under this law, abuse also includes instances of sexual abuse.

Furthermore, a "caretaker" is defined as any facility or provider that has assumed the responsibility of caring for an adult.

Contacting Adult Protective Services

New Mexico Nursing Home Abuse LawyerThe Adult Protective Services Act has procedures for handling reports of abuse and neglect. The reporting agency must investigate the abuse report and continue to monitor the caregiving facility to evaluate its ongoing qualifications for accepting state or federal grants.

A reporting department might then file a petition with the court, empowering the judge to take further measures in handling an abuse allegation. The judge might enter an order providing an adult's involuntary protective placement if they are incapacitated, an emergency exists, or the adult cannot consent to an alternative placement.

NM Nursing Home Negligence Laws & Regulations
  • 3 years with Discovery Rule
  • Medical malpractice – 3 years with Discovery Rule. If the plaintiff is under age six at the time of the act, the plaintiff has until their ninth birthday to bring legal action.
DAMAGES CAP
  • In medical malpractice actions, damages are limited to $600,000, excluding punitive damages and past and future medical care. A health care provider's personal liability is limited to $200,000 for monetary damages and medical care and related benefits; any amount due from a judgment or settlement above $200,000 shall be paid from the patient's compensation fund.
Wrongful DeathSTATUTE OF LIMITATIONS
  • 3 years from the date of death with Discovery Rule.
DAMAGES CAP
  • In medical malpractice actions, damages are limited to $600,000, excluding punitive damages and past and future medical care. A health care provider's personal liability is limited to $200,000 for monetary damages and medical care and related benefits; any amount due from a judgment or settlement above $200,000 shall be paid from the patient's compensation fund.
State ResourcesGet Assistance for Your Legal Claim Today with Albuquerque Lawyers

Speaking with our nursing home lawyers today could provide you with immediate assistance to handle your neglect or abuse case. The Albuquerque abuse and neglect lawyers are experienced in handling neglect and abuse reports and will initiate an investigation and file a compensation claim on your behalf.

Our lawyers are ready to assist families throughout the state in areas such as:

Call our eldercare injury attorneys today to receive the help you need for protecting someone you love.

Asserting Your Loved One's Legal Rights

Many administrators attempt to diffuse the concerning nature of a neglect or abuse report. Family members should work as a legal advocate when filing a claim against the administration.

State law protects victims from nursing home administrators and guarantees the rights, including the right to:

  • Be treated with adequate medical care
  • Be treated with dignity and respect
  • Be free from physical or chemical restraints
  • Be free from neglect and abuse

Administrators often attempt to control the situation while never resolving the family’s issues. Instead, the resident's family should entrust their legal situation with an eldercare abuse attorney advocating for the victims' best interests.

Nursing Home Lawyers Serving Victims of Skin Sores, Pressure Sores & Decubitus Ulcers

The state's nursing homes have an extensive history of serious issues involving patients with pressure sores. In recent years, the number of individuals requiring a nursing home bed has increased dramatically, exacerbating the pressure wound problem.

With a higher demand for beds, many nursing facilities have struggled to find quality medical professionals to provide quality care to the home's patient. As a result, many patients have become victims of nursing home neglect and abuse.

Bedsores (decubitus ulcers, pressure ulcers, pressure sores) are a concerning health issue that requires constant skin monitoring to prevent. Usually, pressure wounds start developing when the patient's bony prominence, like an ankle or elbow, continually presses against a mattress pad or any object.

Body parts with the most significant potential for developing pressure wounds include:

  • Toes, heels, and ankles
  • Back to the knees and elbows
  • Hipbones, buttocks, sacrum, spine
  • Shoulder blades, shoulders, and the back of the head
Avoiding Skin Breakdown

New Mexico Nursing HomeThe nursing staff can take simple measures to prevent developing pressure wounds. The staff must continuously monitor the patient's skin, especially individuals confined to a wheelchair or bedridden.

Routinely repositioning the body allows continuous blood flow to supply oxygen to the skin and underlying tissue. Additionally, caregivers must provide every patient:

Call (800) 926-7565 Toll-Free for a No Obligation Consultation

Nursing homes with successful protocols for preventing facility-acquired skin sores require the staff to follow scheduled "turning" or "repositioning" of the patient's body every two hours or less. Failing to take proper preventative measures could be considered negligence if the patient develops a decubitus ulcer.

Practices and Protocols NM Facilities Should Use to Reduce Incidents of Pressure Sores

Statewide nursing homeswith a low incident rate of pressure wound development usually follow established practices, protocols, and guidelines. These facilities create an effective health plan for every patient upon admittance to the home.

The nursing staff's developed Care Plan ensures the patient improving health through daily skin inspections and routine body repositioning. Usually, nurses will perform a skin assessment at every shift change around-the-clock.

Alternatively, any developed pressure wound left unattended might quickly degrade to a life-threatening condition. The wound could then become susceptible to osteomyelitis (bone infection) or sepsis (blood infection).

Bedsore-related infections are one of the leading underlying causes of patient deaths in nursing homes. Nearly any skin sore in its advanced state is an indicator of negligence at the facility.

The pressure ulcer could have been avoided had staff members followed the established protocols. As a result, many family members with a loved one in a nursing home will hire a reputable pressure wound attorney to take legal action against the facility to stop the abuse.

Hiring an Attorney to Prosecute a Nursing Home, Hospital or Assisted Living Center Where a Decubitus Ulcer Developed

Immediately stopping the neglect is paramount to ensure that someone you love can heal properly. Usually, filing a complaint with the long-term care facility administrator will not bring about an immediate change in the level of care the facility provides.

Typically, hiring an Albuquerque nursing home abuse lawyer to file a complaint or lawsuit is the only viable or affordable option. A skilled skin sore attorney can file a claim or lawsuit against all parties responsible for causing the resident's injury.

Your lawyer could also seek financial compensation using expert testimony by skilled medical personnel trained to treat progressive decubitus ulcers. Our team provides legal services in cities throughout the state, including:

  • Albuquerque
  • Las Cruces
  • Santa Fe
  • Rio Rancho
  • Roswell

Our nursing home attorneys listed below accept cases on contingency. This agreement ensures that no upfront fees are required to stop the negligence and file a claim for financial compensation.

Fill in the contact form here to schedule a free, no-obligation initial consultation to discuss every available legal option. The lawyer can stop the neglect immediately and ensure that someone you love receives the best medical care possible to keep them safe and improve the quality of their daily life.

All discussions with our law firm remain confidential through an attorney-client relationship. Please do not send sensitive information to our law office through voicemail, email, or text message.

Our attorneys follow social distancing guidelines to prevent the spread of Covid-19 (coronavirus).

Call (800) 926-7565 Toll-Free for a No Obligation Consultation
Information on New Mexico Nursing Home Abuse & Negligence Lawsuits

Our nursing home abuse attorneys compiled data from settlements and jury verdicts across the state to give you an idea as to how cases are valued. Learn more about the cases below:

Related ArticlesNursing Home Abuse & Neglect Resources
Client Reviews
★★★★★
Jonathan did a great job helping my family navigate through a lengthy lawsuit involving my grandmother's death in a nursing home. Through every step of the case, Jonathan kept my family informed of the progression of the case. Although our case eventually settled at a mediation, I really was impressed at how well prepared Jonathan was to take the case to trial. Lisa
★★★★★
After I read Jonathan’s Nursing Home Blog, I decided to hire him to look into my wife’s treatment at a local nursing home. Jonathan did a great job explaining the process and the laws that apply to nursing homes. I immediately felt at ease and was glad to have him on my side. Though the lawsuit process was at times frustrating, Jonathan reassured me, particularly at my deposition. I really felt like Jonathan cared about my wife’s best interests, and I think that came across to the lawyers for the nursing home. Eric